Saturday, March 18, 2006

Join Me at the Dallas AUGI CAD Camp

Once again, it's time for AUGI CAD Camp - the Dallas event will be on May 18th this year. Watch the AUGI Web Site for registration info and more details.

This year I'll be teaching "Managing Your Content and Standards in ADT 2007", which will focus on palette-based tools (styles and symbols, including callouts and schedule tags) and tool catalogs. I'll show you how to make it easy to manage, control and distribute custom content without having to customize menus or write a single line of LISP.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

The Dilbert Blog

OK. It's not really Dilbert's blog, but Scott Adams has a blog, anyway. Check it out here:

Thursday, March 09, 2006

The Flaming Arrows Join the Navy!

(Hey, since I'm posting Boy Scout stuff instead of meaningful ADT stuff, what the heck)...

My youngest is about to cross over from Cub Scouts to Boy Scouts and hang with the big boys, so for his den's "last hurrah", we took them down to the USS Lexington (CVN-16 - the "Blue Ghost") of WWII fame. It's now a museum docked in Corpus Christi bay. They have a really cool "live aboard" program for youth groups such as Boy and Girl Scouts. You go down on a Saturday Morning, get mustered in, spend the day on board, then after the tourists leave, you have the run of the ship. Ghost stories in the engine room, movies on the hangar deck...

We slept in the old chiefs' quarters. I must say, 30 years after my own tour of duty on board the USCGC Rush (WHEC 723), the smells still brought back memories, some good, some bad ;-).

The boys all had a great time. If you ever have a chance to do something like this with your kids, I highly recommend it! Well organized and very well done. I know there's other ex-Navy carriers around, such as the USS Yorktown, that host similar types of activities!

The boys are being mustered in, in the image above. Toes on the line! Hands out of the pockets! Shirts tucked in! Anybody caught running does the chicken dance tomorrow! (And yeah, there were a buncha kids doing the chicken dance the next day ). "Hey, 'Cool Breeze' - you better tie your shoes!" The kids loved the verbal abuse! Actually - the guy really had a way with the boys. He gave 'em a hard time, but they really liked his style, and he made sure they knew it was all in fun.

In this image I'm looking kinda fat... what's up with that? I think I'd better lay off the chicken fried steak for awhile... anyway - me and my youngest on the flight deck.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Boy Scout Troop 285 Hikes Pike Davis - Again

Back in January, we visited Pike Davis Ranch in the Texas Hill country again. This time my oldest (a veteran at this type of stuff) went with us again, but also my youngest and some of his Webelos buddies also went - their first backpacking trip.

This year it didn't get down to 18 degrees like it did last year, but it was rainy and cold when we woke up Sunday morning. All had a good time regardless!

Me and the boys just before we left the house. Yes, my eyes are almost closed. I hadn't had any coffee yet. Gimme a break.

My youngest and one of his buddies - about halfway through our 8 mile hike to the campsite.

Both my oldest and youngest, getting ready to rustle up some freeze-dried beef stroganoff. Yumm!

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Architectural Desktop 2007 - New Feature Summary!

It's official, the gag order is off.

What's new in ADT 2007? Here's a few things (in addition to the new AutoCAD features):

Customizable Project Drawing Locations:ADT 2007 allows you to store your drawing files in folders other than the default project location. This may be the answer for those people who have been having trouble running Project Navigator because of issues with Novell serviers. You should be able to keep your project's drawings on the Novell server and store the project data, including the APJ file on a Windows server. That data doesn't take up much room at all. (Warning - I haven't tested this myself, so I can't say for sure, but it should work).

AEC Dimensions are finally usable for CD's. You can specify on a wall style by wall style basis, explicitly where the AEC dimension should dimension to. You can also add dimension points that are associative to deal with non-standard situations, and you can delete and add dimension points for explicit dimension strings.

Stairs got a major facelift. You can create a custom stair from linework, and you can customize individual treads and risers. Their display settings have been improved as well.

Spaces can now be freeform and are associated with their wall/slab boundaries. If you move a wall, simply select the space that was bound by it and select "Update" from the right-click menu. Areas and area groups are gone. Spaces now contain all of the information that areas used to and can be grouped into Zones. These spaces and zones are immediately readable by ABS 2007 as E-Spaces - no conversion necessary, and openings are already assigned from their bounding walls.

Slabs can now have multiple components, similar to walls.

Classifications can now be nested in a tree structure. Classifications can now be assigned to individual objects as well as styles. How long have I been telling people to use classifications? Did I not say that? USE CLASSIFICATIONS!!!

List definitions allow the storing of object names for selection from lists (room names, for example) to eliminate entering repetitive data.

Anchor properties can be used in schedules - example - use an anchor property on a door to extract the fire rating of the wall it's anchored to and assign it to the door as well. Change the wall fire rating and the door's changes as well.

Title overrides for schedules in the properties screen.

In the image above, you can see AEC Dimensions being used - on the right side, I'm using the new "Anchored Palettes" feature of AutoCAD 2007 to anchor my XREF Palette, DesignCenter and QuicCalc pallette to the left side of the screen. Neatly tucked away, but ready to be used by simply moving my mouse over them.

In the image below you can see a closeup of the AEC Dimensions. Note that I was able to control, through the wall styles, where to place the extension lines explicitly (in this case, on the outer edge of structure on the exterior walls, and on the edge of the stud for the interior walls).

In the following image, I've selected the dimensions to show all of the new grip-editing features. Without right-clicking, you can now remove dimension lines, move extension lines to override a default location, remove extension lines, etc. All with the click of a mouse. All extension lines are fully associative and AEC Dimensions work through XREF's. Say bye-bye to standard AutoCAD dimensions - now you can work smarter, not harder, when you annotate.